Cadiz hosts many great tourist activities, but the best (and cheapest) is the free Cadiz walking tours! No need to hire a tour operator as they can be easily self guided around the city. What’s so special about these walking trails are that they’re actually MARKED on the streets, with the different routes defined by separate colors.
While many places lay claim to being Europe’s oldest city, Cadiz has the history, culture, and good vibes to back it up! Before it became Spanish, Cadiz had been home to several legendary civilizations, including the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, and Moors. Evidence of each society can be seen through Cadiz’s amazing walking streets, restaurants, and vibrant atmosphere. So take a walk with us through Europe’s oldest city, I think you’ll like what you see!
Cadiz Walking Tours
El Populo and Santa Maria Districts
Our first route of the Cadiz walking tours, takes you down the narrow cobble stone streets as you journey through the oldest part of Cadiz! You’ll start off passing through the El Populo and Rosa Arches, which will take you into the old midieval section. Here you will find the New Cathedral, where you can climb up the famous Poniente Tower for incredible views of Cadiz. Next, follow the green line towards the Roman Theatre and see the stunning church of Santa Cruz. The route ends in the Santa Maria District, as you run into the city walls at the Puerta de Tierra City Gate.
Castles and Bastions
The second route of the Cadiz walking tours takes you on a stroll around the outer defense walls of the city, and gives you a chance to see some of Spain’s beautiful coastline. As you exit Plaza de Espana, follow the orange line as it borders the 18th Century San Carlos Walls and the Atlantic Ocean. As you take in the picturesque views, make sure not to miss two gorgeous city projects, Alemeda de Apodaca Gardens and Genoves Park.
As you continue along the water, you’ll then pass two of the most famous landmarks in Cadiz. The San Sebastian and Santa Catalina Castles are both must visits, as is the amazing La Caleta Beach which stands in between. Finish your walk and make the turn onto the lively La Palma street, where you can grab a drink and some delicious local seafood.
Our third route of the Cadiz walking tours, gives us another glimpse back in time to 17th and 18th century Spain, when the economy was flourishing with new trade routes to the Indies. Before you start down Sopranis Street, make a stop to see Cadiz’s patron saint, Our Lady of the Rosary. After meeting our lady, continue to city hall in the San Juan de Dios Square. From here, the purple line takes you back into the El Populo district to see the Admiral’s House and Cathedral Square. Make sure not to miss the flower market in Plaza de las Flores, and the highlight of this route, the Central Market!
At the Central Market you will find delicious drinks and tapas around the outer ring, and on the inside an exciting local fish market. On your way out of the market, don’t miss the Tavira Tower, an 18th century watchtower which merchants once used spot incoming ships. The purple route ends on Calle Ancha, a lively epicenter which also serves as Cadiz’s main shopping street. If you’re up for a closer examination of Cadiz’s history, you can also find the cities main museum here as well!
Our last stretch of the Cadiz walking tours takes you on yet another stroll back in time. In March of 1812, the first Constitution was actually signed right here in Cadiz! Although at the time they were still at war with the French, this monumental moment would forever change the course of Spanish history. Your first stop will be at Cadiz’s Provincial Council Palace which stands proudly over the Plaza de Espana. In the square, you will find a wonderful monument with the names of former Parliament members, and the House of Five Towers (and House of Four Towers). These unique set of houses were once used by traders as a hotel of sorts for a quick stay in Cadiz.
After exploring the square, head back to the San Carlos district and visit Alemeda, another gorgeous garden on the water. Following the garden, this walking route will guide you into Plaza San Antonio, the square where Spain’s constitutional proclamation actually took place! Your last bit of time can be used to see art at the San Felipe Neri Oratory, or grab a last bit of history at the Cadiz Museum of Parliament.
Cadiz Walking Tour Tips:
- Make sure to stop by a tourist information center and pick up a map! You can not only see the different routes, but also learn some history along the way! Also, the tourist office is the starting point for all Cadiz walking tours.
- If you lose the line, don’t stress! Some sections are worn down so just continue on, consult your map, and you’ll be bound to bump into it again.
- Most of the lines will take around an hour to complete, so it’s definitely possible to do more then one of the Cadiz walking tours in a day!
- You don’t HAVE to stick to one line. Some of the colors actually cross paths so you can always hop around.
- The Cadiz walking tours are primarily focused on the old town, but don’t let that confine you. Take a trip outside the walls and hit the amazing beaches, or explore the more modern sections of Cadiz.
If you need more Espana in your life, also check out our list of the Most Enchanting Cities of Southern Spain!